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FROM THE OJEN BLOG

Rebecca Strain Receives 2019 Tate Herbert Memorial Post-Secondary Award

The Tate Herbert Memorial Post-Secondary Award recognizes a post-secondary student who has exceeded expectations as a volunteer and made a significant contribution to OJEN’s justice education initiatives. This annual award is named after Logan Tate Herbert, a student in the Law and Society program at Wilfred Laurier University when he lost his life to cancer in 2013 at the age of 20. Like many of the young people OJEN works with, he was discovering a passion for social justice. He was active in his community, and as a high school student, had volunteered at the Barrie Legal Aid office for a co-op program. This award recognizes the dedication to justice and fairness for which Tate is remembered.

 Rebecca Strain, a student at Queen’s University, Faculty of Law, is the fifth recipient of the award.

Rebecca, who has just completed her second year at Queen’s Law, first joined OJEN to complete her Bachelor of Social Work practicum placement from September 2016 to April 2017. During that time, she assisted on a wide range of justice education projects.  She impressed staff with her professionalism, leadership, and ability to connect with equal ease with justice sector volunteers and the youth participating in the programs.

Ted Herbert, Rebecca Strain, and Jan Haskings-Winner

Ted Herbert, Rebecca Strain, and Jan Haskings-Winner 

After completing her practicum, Rebecca continued to volunteer with OJEN. In both her first and second years at Queen’s Law School, she has balanced the demands of classes with several volunteer commitments.

During her first year, she took on the lead co-ordinator role with the Architects of Justice Program. This public engagement initiative organized by The Action Group on Access to Justice (TAG) in partnership with OJEN, aimed to increase public participation in the development of informed access to justice responses. Rebecca organized volunteers and participated as a student researcher surveying people in public places about their perspectives on the justice system.

In the 2018-2019 school year, Rebecca sat on the newly formed Kingston OJEN committee and assisted in organizing its first justice education activity – a full-day law symposium for high school students hosted by the Queen’s Faculty of Law. She also assisted with an OJEN justice education project delivered at a local Kingston high school. 

Justice Mulligan, Rebecca Strain, and Jan Haskings-Winner

Justice Katrina Mulligan, Rebecca Strain, and Jan Haskings-Winner

At a reception on June 11th, Rebecca was presented with an iPad mini by Tate’s father, Ted Herbert.  OJEN co-chairs Justice Katrina Mulligan and Jan Haskings-Winner presented her with a letter of appreciation on behalf of the Board of Directors.  Her name will also be added to a plaque that is permanently mounted in the Barrie Courthouse.

Awards for volunteerism are most often given to individuals later in their career.  The Tate Herbert Memorial Post-Secondary Award recognizes the dedication, passion and hard work of students who are starting out on their career path.  Rebecca is a wonderful example of such a student!

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